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Archives for November 2009

Father Hardon on Chastity

I often turn to Fr. Hardon for advice, becaue he always gives the straight poop. Here he is on chastity:

Giving into one’s lustful drives is irrational. Chastity is more than prudent self-control. To practice chastity there must be chastity of the eyes, chastity of the ears, chastity of thought and chastity of desire.

The Holy Eucharist is the principal source we have for obtaining the distinctive grace we need to practice Christian chastity.

Grace permits us to surrender our wills to the will of God. Grace directs our will to command our reproductive powers to conform to the will of Jesus Christ.

About 150 AD, Diognetus, a learned Greek expressed a desire to know what Christianity really means and asked. “What is this new race of men who are neither pagans nor Jews?” In the Letter to Diognetus the answer is given.

Like others, Christians also marry and have children, but they do not expose these children. They do not kill their children. Christians share their meals, but not their wives. They live in the flesh, but they are not governed by the desires of the flesh. They pass their days upon earth, but they are citizens of heaven.

Frequent, even daily assistance at Mass is a powerful source of chaste living. The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is a reservoir of divine strength against the demon of lust for all mankind.

A New Business Model for Publishing?

I’ve been reading articles and blog posts by John J. Miller for years over at National Review, and I was only half surprised to find out that he was publishing his first novel. The First Assassin is an historical novel that takes place at the beginning of the Civil War, and seems as though it will be a nice complement to Gore Vidal’s Lincoln (just kidding, John!). Having finally finished The Killer Angels a few weeks ago, I’m ready for another fictional take on the Civil War era.

I was surprised to learn that Miller self-published the book through CreateSpace, the latest incarnation of BookSurge the print-on-demand press so strongly associated with amazon.com. As he describes his publishing odyssey on his website:

The spine of The First Assassin includes the title of the book and my name as author. At the bottom, there’s also a small publisher’s logo: a W with a box around it. That stands for Woodbridge Press, my own imprint.

So what is the Woodbridge Press? It’s my attempt at entrepreneurship, an opportunity that puts me in charge of every aspect of The First Assassin. I’m not only the writer but also the publisher and publicist.

The First Assassin is available exclusively online through a new print-on-demand service: If you order a copy, they’ll print one and mail it to you. My partner is CreateSpace.com, a subsidiary of Amazon.com. During this “soft launch” phase, The First Assassin may be purchased only through CreateSpace.com (here). Soon, it will also be listed on Amazon.com.

I’m impressed, and I think it shows how years of hard work may be required to produce a successful novel. And I’m not even referring to the actual writing of the novel, which Miller has apparently been working on for a number of years. Having already published non-fiction and established a career as a journalist with a fairly large profile at National Review, Miller is in a great position to market the novel. While I’m not sure this model works as well for authors with a smaller cyber footprint, it may not be long before POD options like CreateSpace are the only way to go. As Miller explains:

When I finished writing The First Assassin, I tried to sell it to a traditional publisher the old fashioned way, as I had done with my previous books of non-fiction. Yet I couldn’t find a publisher that was willing to take a chance on a first-time novelist during the worst economy of our lives. I didn’t exhaust my options in this area, but I did start to explore alternatives.

So best of luck to John Miller and The First Assassin. I’m ordering a copy, and will try to get a review up at Korrektiv soon. Hey, I just realized I’m now a part of Miller’s viral marketing scheme!

Korrektiv Christmas Gift Suggestion

Lancelot

Molly doesn’t like Lancelot … but I do.

Frickin’ Fiction!

Don’t miss Big Jon, Bully’s recent forays into fiction at Korrektiv Supplemental.

tight, toned abs and a sexy new you in just 4 weeks [advertisement]

Pre-enactment of a scene from the upcoming 2012 Korrektiv Summit/Spa Month in Greece

One Moral Maxim, extended version

Not Acts, but from somewhere in Hezekiah, wasn’t it?

The Lord helps those who help themselves by helping them help themselves.

What Walker Percy wrote in his Bible

Alphonse: Murder Sleep

Issue Two of my five-issue comic book series is now available at IndyPlanet. Thanks again to everyone who donated to the cause.

And yes, I’m begging again at Kickstarter for Issue Three. I don’t want to bleed those who have already been kind enough to donate, but maybe consider passing the word along to another interested party?

At any rate, it’s done, and I’m very pleased with it. Onward.

Proposed site of next Korrektiv summit

On Tell Tale Signs

The eighth in the Dylan Bootleg Series that is, which I’ve been listening to per the recommendations of Rufus and CNB. So I’m a little late to the party, but here’s a thought.

My favorite track (are they still called tracks on a CD? What about a digital download?) Is the first one: “Mississippi”, mostly acoustic. It actually sounds like something off of World Gone Wrong. And I had this thought while listening to the much more clearly sung lyric, The emptiness is endless, cold as the clay / You can come back, but you can’t come back all the way: Dylan has come back all the way on these last three albums – more than that, with outtakes like these.

Other winners are “Red River Shore”, “Born in Time”, and “Huck’s Tune”. I think the strangest song from the album is “Dreamin’ of You”, which sounds to me like Dylan’s U2 song. Which might actually be true, since it was apparently Bono who suggested to Dylan that Daniel Lanois produce Time Out Of Mind, from which the song was taken.

Over to you, Rufus, for a review of Christmas In The Heart.

Attached Earlobes: MURG Study Remains Controversial

The 2005 landmark study by the MURG research group continues to be a big draw of readers to this blog — and a continuing lightning rod for voices of outrage. Viz. the following recent comment from jfoster57:

That’s the most idiotic and preposterous thing I’ve ever heard; isn’t someone who researches the implications of ‘attached earlobes and criminal tendencies’ displaying some pretty bizarre behavior in the first place?

Methinks thou dost protest a bit much there, jfoster57!

From the YouTube Kung Fu Archives

Before there was Survivor, before there was The Apprentice, there was Kung Fu!

Cf. “Be as wise as serpents but as gentle as doves.”

From the YouTube Silent Film Archives: The Matrix

This is fantastic. (h/t to almostgotit)

Bye bye for a bit.

Dept. of the Obvious: I need to go fallow for a while.

Birthday Limerick

There was an old lady named Urs
who kept a shotgun in her purse
for dispensing with fools
and Bush-era rules
and writers of bad birthday verse.

REM Live at the Olympia

Listen free on Lala! Stipe actually sounds really good. And they do “Romance,” one of my old favorites. Who knows, I may even buy a track or two. Yay internet!